At the peak of the pandemic, while many other businesses were struggling to keep their doors open, Dean Donnelly and Michele Angell decided to take a leap of faith. The opportunity arose to open a restaurant in Bayshore Gardens and they jumped on it. Since its opening in November of 2020, Mean Dean’s Local Kitchen has earned its reputation as one of the area’s best hidden gems.
This “polished casual” restaurant serves award-winning meals in a comfortable atmosphere. When asked about this venture, Dean said:
“This truly is a passion project for us. We’ve come to realize that happiness comes when you love what you do. For us, that is creating dishes, doing events, and getting to know our clientele. We’ve both worked in tourist areas where you never see the same guest twice. We wanted to be in a neighborhood where we could cater to the locals and really get to know our guests.”
If you’ve been in the Bradenton area for some time, there’s a good chance you’ve experienced Dean’s food and hospitality before. He was the former Wine Director of Flemings Steakhouse in Sarasota and moved the Bradenton to open Johnny Leverocks restaurants. He also previously owned and operated Cedar Reef Fish Camp, a popular seafood restaurant with locations in Bradenton and Venice.
Co-owner Michele Angell is actually a pilot, whose career is on hold due to the pandemic. Although this is something different for her, she loves the creativity and challenges that come with operating a restaurant.
Everything on the menu here is made from scratch with the highest quality ingredients. Some of the most popular items include the Cedar Plank Salmon and Drunken Cuban Sandwich. The salmon is marinated in a bourbon-citrus marinade and then cooked on a cedar plank. The Drunken Cuban Sandwich made from pork slow-roasted in a mixture of dark rum and espresso and pressed on local Cuban bread.
Mean Dean’s Local Kitchen also serves Sunday brunch! The menu is absolutely incredible, featuring items like Cedar Salmon Benedict, Stuffed French Toast, Prime Rib Benedict, and Chicken and Waffles. They also have classy adult beverages including Elderflower Mimosas and Hibiscus/Lavender Mimosas.
Mean Dean’s is located at 6059 26th St. W. Bradenton, FL 34207. They’re open Sunday through Thursday from 11 am to 9 pm and Friday and Saturday from 11 am to 10 pm. You can enjoy brunch every Sunday until 3 pm. When you stop by to visit, be sure to tell them you heard about it on Discover Bradenton!